Here are the teams projected to make the 2016 NCAA tournament

With all games played, here are the teams projected to be in the 2016 NCAA Division I men’s tournament, grouped by seed:

Quinnipiac
St. Cloud State
North Dakota
Providence

Boston College
Denver
Michigan
UMass-Lowell

Boston University
Yale
Harvard
Notre Dame

Northeastern
Minnesota-Duluth
Rochester Institute of Technology
Ferris State

The PairWise Rankings mimic the selection process used by the NCAA Division I men’s ice hockey committee in picking the 10 at-large teams. Six automatic qualifiers — the conference tournament champions — also make the field.

The selection show airs at noon EDT on Sunday on ESPNU; we’ll have a live blog to discuss things.

Jayson Moy is working on his final Bracketology and we’ll have that posted when he’s done with the analysis.

116 COMMENTS

  1. is RIT the nominal 16 because its PWR is lower than Ferris State?

    Assuming it is, and it is matched with QU, then Duluth has to play Providence, Northeastern / NoDak, and Ferris State / St Cloud.

    In the middle, yale and BU and Harvard and Notre Dame more or less have to swap to avoid same conference first round matches. Switch Denver and Michigan for attendance, too.

    So PC, BC, Harvard, and Duluth in the Northeast, QU, Lowell, Yale, RIT in Albany, No Dak, michigan, Notre Dame, Northeastern in Cinci, and St Cloud, Denver, BU, and Ferris state in Minneapolis. That west looks a bit too tough, with 2,6, 9 and 15, but the attendance factor in cinci would make the 6/7 swap tempting.

    • Northeastern and RIT will end up out east and Ferris and UMD will be in the west. Teams can be moved within the seed band, especially 4th seeds.

        • Possible, but look at how unpredictable basketball was. I could see where they *may* set up one interconference first round matchup for attendance sake. 99% chance they won’t, but still a chance.

          • SCSU and UMD will not play each other first round. Unfair to both as hey just battled each other for the conference title tonight.

      • Northeastern will be the highest 4 seed, and if you go by 1v16, 2v15, etc, UND would play Duluth, which wont happen in round 1, so they have to switch. Northeastern goes to Cincy, Duluth out east.

  2. is RIT the nominal 16 because its PWR is lower than Ferris State?

    Assuming it is, and it is matched with QU, then Duluth has to play Providence, Northeastern / NoDak, and Ferris State / St Cloud.

    In the middle, yale and BU and Harvard and Notre Dame more or less have to swap to avoid same conference first round matches. Switch Denver and Michigan for attendance, too.

    So PC, BC, Harvard, and Duluth in the Northeast, QU, Lowell, Yale, RIT in Albany, No Dak, michigan, Notre Dame, Northeastern in Cinci, and St Cloud, Denver, BU, and Ferris state in Minneapolis. That west looks a bit too tough, with 2,6, 9 and 15, but the attendance factor in cinci would make the 6/7 swap tempting.

    • Northeastern and RIT will end up out east and Ferris and UMD will be in the west. Teams can be moved within the seed band, especially 4th seeds.

        • Possible, but look at how unpredictable basketball was. I could see where they *may* set up one interconference first round matchup for attendance sake. 99% chance they won’t, but still a chance.

          • SCSU and UMD will not play each other first round. Unfair to both as hey just battled each other for the conference title tonight.

      • Northeastern will be the highest 4 seed, and if you go by 1v16, 2v15, etc, UND would play Duluth, which wont happen in round 1, so they have to switch. Northeastern goes to Cincy, Duluth out east.

  3. With the AHA inter-conference record of 15-48-3, and RIT being a whopping 0-5-1 out of conference (& might I mention playing at HOME in the play-offs), holding a spot for that conference champion is a complete joke. Perhaps the concept of a play-in game with the top D-III program, or with the last un-selected D-I program would be appropriate. RIT had the 60th toughest schedule (out of 60 teams) and now make the NCAA’s because they won the A-HA conference….and that is laughable for all but Cornell, who could beat RIT 99 out of 100 times this year. Sad.

    • I’m sure if your conference were as bad as the AHC (and it could be, you could be a B1G fan), you’d be singing a different tune.

      I’d recommend not sitting for a while, with a butt that hurt.

  4. With the AHA inter-conference record of 15-48-3, and RIT being a whopping 0-5-1 out of conference (& might I mention playing at HOME in the play-offs), holding a spot for that conference champion is a complete joke. Perhaps the concept of a play-in game with the top D-III program, or with the last un-selected D-I program would be appropriate. RIT had the 60th toughest schedule (out of 60 teams) and now make the NCAA’s because they won the A-HA conference….and that is laughable for all but Cornell, who could beat RIT 99 out of 100 times this year. Sad.

    • I’m sure if your conference were as bad as the AHC (and it could be, you could be a B1G fan), you’d be singing a different tune.

      I’d recommend not sitting for a while, with a butt that hurt.

  5. Because of the tie at #8, the committee could easily make BU a 2-seed.
    Here’s what I’d like to see:
    Albany: QU, BU, Yale, RIT
    St. Paul: StC, DU, UML, UMD
    Cincy: UND, MI, ND, FSU
    Woosta: PC, BC, Harv, NU
    I realize you should swap NU and UMD to avoid the intra-conference, but I say why screw over both schools’ fans? Regionals are supposed to be regional–let them drive to the games and make a buck besides. 5-day advance plane tickets are not cheap!

    • There are no ties in the PWR. Teams that have won the same number of comparisons are separated by RPI, so BU is the overall number 10. By rule teams can not be moved from one seed band to another. Overall seeds 9-12 will be a 3 somewhere. BU will bot be a 2.

      • Why do you have to use the RPI to break ties? If what you’re saying is true, we don’t need a committee and a computer could spit out the bracket.
        The NC$$ has humans involved to make sure it doesn’t lose too much of its precious money on the tournament. And BU puts a lot more butts in Albany’s otherwise empty seats than UML.

        • Really? Where the F were they last weekend in Lowell…. not really a long drive from Boston. They won’t travel nearly as well as Lowell will. You should write about something you have an idea about next time……..

          • You know what? You’re right. UML outdrew BU in attendance this year and beat them 3-1 head-to-head. Mea culpa. I apologize for disrespecting the River Hawks. (I am still living in the 90’s!) New bracket:
            Albany: QU, UML, Yale, RIT
            St. Paul: StC, DU, BU, UMD
            Cincy: UND, MI, ND, FSU
            Woosta: PC, BC, Harv, NU

          • UMD cannot be in St. Paul. They are a 4 seed, st cloud a 1 seed, that matchup can not happen. Duluth out east, Northeastern in Cincy, Farris in St. Paul.

          • I think that this sounds about right.
            As in most years, it seems that about 14 teams really have a shot.

          • See original post. Why be so strict on intra conference when it means fans can drive? This is why no one goes to these things, and why we’re supposed to have humans in the loop–to apply common sense.

          • Because that is exactly what the committee does. If a conference has 4 of less teams in the tournament, they wont schedule intra-conference for the first round. 5 or more, then they have the choice of doing it. Been that way for years.

          • And it’s been dumb for years. One year there was a regional in Colorado Springs and the committee sent Air Force to Worcester. Just dumb. And World Arena was half-empty and dead. Is “”bracket integrity” really that important, and has regional attendance picked up since then? I pretty much stopped going after that.

          • I actually agree with this statement although I think that home rink of the #1 seed would be best for business until the frozen four.

        • Are you kidding me. Look a the attendance this year. Lowell has significantly higher attendance than BU. Any true hockey fan can see that. You’re thinking that this is 1990.

          • True but check out travel attendance in the tourney for Lowell over that past 3 years.
            Packed Manchester as a 1 seed 3 years ago. Also full house in Worcester 2 years ago. 14000 tonight in Boston without BU or BC in it.

        • You’re joking right? A computer CAN spit out the 16 teams because those are the rules the NCAA hockey committee follows. The RPI is used to break ties because that is the rule they follow. Why can’t you grab the puck and throw it into the net? Because that is the rule. I find it odd you’re taking the time to post on USCHO articles but have obviously not bothered to read the approximately 15,000 articles and blogs and twitter accounts etc where all of this is discussed. The NCAA uses a strict set of metrics to select and seed this tournament. The committee comes into play when teams need to be moved within their seed bands to satisfy one of the other rules, such as avoiding conference rematches and occasionally trying to goose attendance. For instance, no one will be surprised if UMich is moved to Cincinnati this time around to get butts in seats there. And Notre Dame will likely be moved there to avoid a first round conference rematch with BC, and also placed in Ohio, although by rule they don’t have to be moved since there are 5 or more HE teams in the tournament. Seriously, USCHO has a weekly article where all of this is explained for the last 2 months of the season.

          • And then fudges them when convenient. Been following the tournament for three decades and have seen it happen plenty of times.

  6. Because of the tie at #8, the committee could easily make BU a 2-seed.
    Here’s what I’d like to see:
    Albany: QU, BU, Yale, RIT
    St. Paul: StC, DU, UML, UMD
    Cincy: UND, MI, ND, FSU
    Woosta: PC, BC, Harv, NU
    I realize you should swap NU and UMD to avoid the intra-conference, but I say why screw over both schools’ fans? Regionals are supposed to be regional–let them drive to the games and make a buck besides. 5-day advance plane tickets are not cheap!

    • There are no ties in the PWR. Teams that have won the same number of comparisons are separated by RPI, so BU is the overall number 10. By rule teams can not be moved from one seed band to another. Overall seeds 9-12 will be a 3 somewhere. BU will bot be a 2.

      • Why do you have to use the RPI to break ties? If what you’re saying is true, we don’t need a committee and a computer could spit out the bracket.
        The NC$$ has humans involved to make sure it doesn’t lose too much of its precious money on the tournament. And BU puts a lot more butts in Albany’s otherwise empty seats than UML.

        • Really? Where the F were they last weekend in Lowell…. not really a long drive from Boston. They won’t travel nearly as well as Lowell will. You should write about something you have an idea about next time……..

          • You know what? You’re right. UML outdrew BU in attendance this year and beat them 3-1 head-to-head. Mea culpa. I apologize for disrespecting the River Hawks. (I am still living in the 90’s!) New bracket:
            Albany: QU, UML, Yale, RIT
            St. Paul: StC, DU, BU, UMD
            Cincy: UND, MI, ND, FSU
            Woosta: PC, BC, Harv, NU

          • UMD cannot be in St. Paul. They are a 4 seed, st cloud a 1 seed, that matchup can not happen. Duluth out east, Northeastern in Cincy, Farris in St. Paul.

          • I think that this sounds about right.
            As in most years, it seems that about 14 teams really have a shot.

          • See original post. Why be so strict on intra conference when it means fans can drive? This is why no one goes to these things, and why we’re supposed to have humans in the loop–to apply common sense.

          • Because that is exactly what the committee does. If a conference has 4 of less teams in the tournament, they wont schedule intra-conference for the first round. 5 or more, then they have the choice of doing it. Been that way for years.

          • And it’s been dumb for years. One year there was a regional in Colorado Springs and the committee sent Air Force to Worcester. Just dumb. And World Arena was half-empty and dead. Is “”bracket integrity” really that important, and has regional attendance picked up since then? I pretty much stopped going after that.

          • I actually agree with this statement although I think that home rink of the #1 seed would be best for business until the frozen four.

        • Are you kidding me. Look a the attendance this year. Lowell has significantly higher attendance than BU. Any true hockey fan can see that. You’re thinking that this is 1990.

          • True but check out travel attendance in the tourney for Lowell over that past 3 years.
            Packed Manchester as a 1 seed 3 years ago. Also full house in Worcester 2 years ago. 14000 tonight in Boston without BU or BC in it.

        • You’re joking right? A computer CAN spit out the 16 teams because those are the rules the NCAA hockey committee follows. The RPI is used to break ties because that is the rule they follow. Why can’t you grab the puck and throw it into the net? Because that is the rule. I find it odd you’re taking the time to post on USCHO articles but have obviously not bothered to read the approximately 15,000 articles and blogs and twitter accounts etc where all of this is discussed. The NCAA uses a strict set of metrics to select and seed this tournament. The committee comes into play when teams need to be moved within their seed bands to satisfy one of the other rules, such as avoiding conference rematches and occasionally trying to goose attendance. For instance, no one will be surprised if UMich is moved to Cincinnati this time around to get butts in seats there. And Notre Dame will likely be moved there to avoid a first round conference rematch with BC, and also placed in Ohio, although by rule they don’t have to be moved since there are 5 or more HE teams in the tournament. Seriously, USCHO has a weekly article where all of this is explained for the last 2 months of the season.

          • And then fudges them when convenient. Been following the tournament for three decades and have seen it happen plenty of times.

  7. Northeastern might be the most dangerous 4-seed in the history of the tournament. Stinkin’ 19-1-2 in 2016 which just culminated with four straight wins over top 10 teams.

    I’ll bet on them making the frozen four regardless of bracket they’re in (and it would seem to be some poetic justice for Providence to get them since Providence was gifted home ice as a 4-seed last year)

    Then again, it’s the NCAA tournament. Even with all that momentum, they might lose their first game anyway because the whole thing is a random number generator.

    • If Northeastern gets paired up against North Dakota in the first round like I think they might… let’s just say I don’t like North Dakota’s chances.

      • Why? UND has a loss and tie on the weekend and all of a sudden they are bad? 6 losses all year in the toughest conference in the nation. I’m sure it will be a good game.

        • North Dakota has made a habit of underperforming in the tournament and no one is hotter than Northeastern right now. I’d like the Huskies chances against the Fighting Whatevers

          • Tournament time, I never favor anyone. too much can happen in only 1 game. Best of 3, then I’ll start picking teams to win.

          • 7 of 8 teams with strength of schedule in the top 10 and all 8 in the top 15. I’d say thats a pretty tough conference.

          • Cycles. From 2000 to 2007, only east team to win a title was BC one year. Lately, its been east coast. But college hockey in general is must more even than even 15 years ago.

          • Obviously Hockey East is #1 followed by NCHC. The Small Ten is a joke. Trying to change rules, mediocre teams. etc. Overall attendance is their only saving grace as well as TV network. ND I have a tremendous respect for.

          • I’d say HE and the NCHC are pretty even. Last year we had 6 teams in the tourney, this year HE has 6.

          • I dont even think they have great attendance and I have no clue how anyone can stand listening to those network announcers. Just painful tonight.

  8. Northeastern might be the most dangerous 4-seed in the history of the tournament. Stinkin’ 19-1-2 in 2016 which just culminated with four straight wins over top 10 teams.

    I’ll bet on them making the frozen four regardless of bracket they’re in (and it would seem to be some poetic justice for Providence to get them since Providence was gifted home ice as a 4-seed last year)

    Then again, it’s the NCAA tournament. Even with all that momentum, they might lose their first game anyway because the whole thing is a random number generator.

    • If Northeastern gets paired up against North Dakota in the first round like I think they might… let’s just say I don’t like North Dakota’s chances.

      • Why? UND has a loss and tie on the weekend and all of a sudden they are bad? 6 losses all year in the toughest conference in the nation. I’m sure it will be a good game.

        • North Dakota has made a habit of underperforming in the tournament and no one is hotter than Northeastern right now. I’d like the Huskies chances against the Fighting Whatevers

          • Tournament time, I never favor anyone. too much can happen in only 1 game. Best of 3, then I’ll start picking teams to win.

          • 7 of 8 teams with strength of schedule in the top 10 and all 8 in the top 15. I’d say thats a pretty tough conference.

          • Cycles. From 2000 to 2007, only east team to win a title was BC one year. Lately, its been east coast. But college hockey in general is must more even than even 15 years ago.

          • Obviously Hockey East is #1 followed by NCHC. The Small Ten is a joke. Trying to change rules, mediocre teams. etc. Overall attendance is their only saving grace as well as TV network. ND I have a tremendous respect for.

          • I’d say HE and the NCHC are pretty even. Last year we had 6 teams in the tourney, this year HE has 6.

          • I dont even think they have great attendance and I have no clue how anyone can stand listening to those network announcers. Just painful tonight.

  9. I know that Michigan was in either way today! But can anyone please explain how they have been ranked so high in the pwr? Who have they played and more importantly, who have they beat??

    • All about non-conference victories. Pretty sure they only lost twice in non-conference play. But I do think they are overrated since a majority of their games came against clump 6 teams with atrocious defense while they were still averaging 3 goals given up per game.

  10. I know that Michigan was in either way today! But can anyone please explain how they have been ranked so high in the pwr? Who have they played and more importantly, who have they beat??

    • All about non-conference victories. Pretty sure they only lost twice in non-conference play. But I do think they are overrated since a majority of their games came against clump 6 teams with atrocious defense while they were still averaging 3 goals given up per game.

  11. My bracketology is the following:
    NE-Worch
    Quin vs. RIT
    ML vs. Harv.
    E-Albany
    Prov. vs. UMD
    BC vs. Yale
    MW-Cincy
    Sioux vs. NEeastern
    Mich vs. Notre
    W-St. Paul
    SCSU vs. Ferris
    Denv vs. BU

  12. My bracketology is the following:
    NE-Worch
    Quin vs. RIT
    ML vs. Harv.
    E-Albany
    Prov. vs. UMD
    BC vs. Yale
    MW-Cincy
    Sioux vs. NEeastern
    Mich vs. Notre
    W-St. Paul
    SCSU vs. Ferris
    Denv vs. BU

  13. HE has six selections in the tournament, covering all four seeds. They should have the chance to earn an all HE frozen four. Packing them together in regionals is a disservice to this league. Remember they play the core of their schedule against each other so they are not beating up on softies. Putting three HE entries in the NE regional should be rejected or any similar slanted selection. Let the entries from each conference battle it out with other conferences. That is only fair.

    • NCAA had a WCHA Frozen 4 & has not allowed it to be possible since. Same last year with NCHC.

      The only interesting part of the selection is who gets screwed with tough conference opponents. Pretty sure they won’t put UMD with UND for possible 6th game this year, but, it is the NCAA. Too bad there isn’t a walk down the plank for the NCAA…

      • Don
        Thanks for the reply
        I didn’t know this was NCAA policy. Sounds a little like the nanny state. If playing doesn’t get us the picture we want we will simply ignore the on ice results and rig the pairings to get what we want. I guess they see one conference frozen four as reducing interest or the gate, which may be true. My guess turned out to be close with a switch of MD and FSU to make it right. I think it is a good result

  14. HE has six selections in the tournament, covering all four seeds. They should have the chance to earn an all HE frozen four. Packing them together in regionals is a disservice to this league. Remember they play the core of their schedule against each other so they are not beating up on softies. Putting three HE entries in the NE regional should be rejected or any similar slanted selection. Let the entries from each conference battle it out with other conferences. That is only fair.

    • NCAA had a WCHA Frozen 4 & has not allowed it to be possible since. Same last year with NCHC.

      The only interesting part of the selection is who gets screwed with tough conference opponents. Pretty sure they won’t put UMD with UND for possible 6th game this year, but, it is the NCAA. Too bad there isn’t a walk down the plank for the NCAA…

      • Don
        Thanks for the reply
        I didn’t know this was NCAA policy. Sounds a little like the nanny state. If playing doesn’t get us the picture we want we will simply ignore the on ice results and rig the pairings to get what we want. I guess they see one conference frozen four as reducing interest or the gate, which may be true. My guess turned out to be close with a switch of MD and FSU to make it right. I think it is a good result

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